The Steelers have identified the three players they consider their free agent priorities and, to what should be nobody's surprise, they are placekicker Jeff Reed, nose tackle Casey Hampton and free safety Ryan Clark.
The Steelers will make overtures to the agents of those players in the coming month leading up to the opening of free agency March 5.
Contract offers will not be made to cornerback Deshea Townsend and running back Willie Parker before the start of free agency, but the club will not rule out offering those players deals at some point as well. It's unlikely that either will return to Pittsburgh.
The Steelers have both a franchise and transition tag available and could use both.
Though the Steelers are tight-lipped about the order in which they are placing the three priority players, it is believed to be Hampton, Reed and then Clark.
Clark, however, could be the easiest of the three to sign, giving Pittsburgh the option of using its tags on Hampton and Reed.